Keeping it real…

We have a teacher who likes to joke that post her teaching career she is going to write a book called “Keeping it Real With Rene”.  She constantly is pointing out the idiosyncratic issues within her kinder day that just needs someone to point out the “realness” in the situation.

Very few days do I have what I would consider a “tough” job. I genuinely LOVE what I do, which I talked about to my staff  here.  Most days are filled with easy decisions, with  hugs, with the day to day tasks of being an assistant principal. Stressful at times, but never TOUGH.

Yesterday was tough. Yesterday I realized that, quite harshly,  not everyone parents the way I parent,  loves the way I love, or was brought up the way I was brought up. Yesterday, I left work in tears, b/c “keeping it real”  put what I do back in perspective.

Controversially, I think what is going to define me as an administrator isn’t going to be test scores or ratings, or attendance percentages. I want it to be that every student I serve walks out of our doors knowing that there are adults who care about them. Who care about their safety, about their well being. Who gives an example of what is wrong and what is right. I want them to ENJOY elementary school, a’cuz life sure doesn’t get any easier down the road.

If they get to learn their math facts along the way, so be it.




  1. Michele said:

    Hope today was a better day… and thanks for keepin’ it real. 🙂

    May 3, 2011
  2. 8amber8 said:

    thanks Michelle….had some carry over fallout, :-/ but I know it’s all for the best and will get better frm here…

    May 3, 2011
  3. Pam said:

    I am so proud of you an what you do every single day for our students!

    May 4, 2011
  4. David Truss said:

    About 8-10 years ago, I remember a student of mine, ‘G’, getting in trouble at lunch. Good kid, stupid choice. He told me what he had done when he joined my class late, but after school I still went to my Vice Principal to hear the details. After a couple minutes of waiting, my VP left his office with a kid, ‘T’, who was a frequent office ‘visitor’ that had many issues in his life both in and out of school.

    I chatted with my VP for a bit, and then he said to me, “This job has given me a new appreciation for the kid I’d never want to be.”

    He continued, “What I mean is that ‘G’ is a kid that I would trade lives with. He’s a good kid, great parents, makes a mistake and totally understands why it was wrong. He will head to university and carve out a good life for himself. Whereas ‘T’ has things pretty tough. He goes home to trouble, comes to school and causes trouble, and doesn’t feel bad about the trouble he gets into. Some people have so many obstacles to face before they even get to school, much less dealing with what schools offer them. So, this job has taught me a new respect for these kids… the ones who by no fault of their own are dealt with cards I’d never want to deal with.”

    It was a short conversation, but it has stuck with me. I know it has helped me deal with ‘the kid I’d never want to be’ with more compassion, caring and a focus on providing that kid with a good school environment that offers more than home-life might. And this is anything but easy to do… (But totally worth the effort!)

    Hope this helps,

    May 5, 2011
  5. Darcy Mullin said:

    Amber, inspiring post. Keeping it real is putting the kids first and leading with our hearts as muchn as our minds. How do we measure success, when we can’t measure hope and resiliency? Thanks for reminding us all what’s really important.

    May 5, 2011
  6. Martha said:

    I think the situation you describe is the hardest and, at the same time, the most important part about being an educator. For any student, learning “stuff” (curriculum) is completely useless and irrelevant if he/she doesn’t feel secure and loved and important. Keep doing what you are doing! Most kids don’t know the way to communicate their thanks or even realize the gift you are giving, but they are so blessed to have an admin like you in their corner!

    May 9, 2011

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